The need for escapism and the appreciation for period dramas are not the main explanations for Bridgerton’s success on Netflix. What’s behind this new sensation is a response to a latent outcry. Let’s uncover it!
No doubt, Netflix hit jackpot together with Julia Quinn, Shondaland and Chris Van Dusen. The book series came to our home screens and people were immediately enchanted. Which brings us to the obvious question: Why?
The main reason is to be revealed.
Every Brand’s job is to understand what drives human emotions and needs, and address them with the right offer. As people researchers, we must pay attention to certain emotional ideals that remain deep in our hearts, perhaps not even conscious yet. Did you ever ask a customer to create the next big thing? Henry Ford used to say that if he were to listen to the conscious demands of people, he would have fabricated faster horses instead of cars.
Which leads to the question: Do people always know what they want before it’s given to them?
Risking to sound a bit like Lady Whistledown, I dare say this author has understood the main issues that created such a commotion when it comes to this series, who’s become a Brand of its own.
Many friends of mine claim that Bridgeton is a “soft porn”, specially made for woman to fulfill their need of spicy content, without reaching for sex scenes presented by empty characters lacking a storyline - which, let’s face it, is what the porn industry is more known to produce. Instead of women being portrayed as simply sexual objects, this time, the world of Jane Austen is open before our eyes with spicy touches and groans. It’s a relief to know that romance can also be deliciously hedonist.
Based on that, the answer to its success looked simple at first glance. Until I saw this video on YouTube:
It turns out the series is creating new expectations on love. In many occasions, speeches and glances on screen (inspired by the books) were a feast to the eyes and ears. It touched us, because they connect to our ideals. And… as we found ourselves surrounded by the tales of classic love meeting sexual content, we were introduced to an expression that best unifies the need of desire combined with affection:
“I. BURN. FOR. YOU. “
One sentence to synthetize it all.
When the character played by Rege-Jean Page introduces these words on his wedding night, a whole new world opens up. We come to realize that the fire that lives inside him is greater than just feeling horny, for it speaks of sentiment levels he never believed was possible - or fought his best to keep them at bay. His words didn’t simply emerge from the fetish of bedding a virgin. “I burn for you” is able to express lust as well as admiration, the ache for meaningful connection. Let us remember: fire is the best element when it comes to melting two things into one.
Let’s pay attention to the series name: It starts with a BRIDGE.
This means that Bridgerton is a counter wave. A wave that flows on the opposite direction of banalized relations.
And isn’t it refreshing?
How many contents and stories are filled with independent men or women, who treat sex too lightly, with shallow approaches, hiding the importance of true intimacy? And more importantly, teaching us that it’s OK to give ourselves based on peripheral bonds…
In a world where apps and platforms only motivate relationships based on temporary lust, comes a content that praises the process of building up something meaningful, admiring the patience of taking the time to really know someone.
I know. Bridgerton it’s not perfect, because period romances show the presence of submissive and rather ignorant women. Back then, it was established that a true Lady is never taught to touch herself, let alone to know what really happens on a marital bed before her big day. This is not a lesson for the future, of course.
Historical facts aside, stories told by Bridgerton found a way to show the undeniable greatness of love combined with physical satisfaction, not forgetting all other rewards of intimacy and self discovery.
What we are experiencing with the success of this series is perhaps the symptom of tiredness of everything that is superficial. Of what is too “liquid” instead of profound, precisely what Zygmunt Bauman was so critical about modern society.
The connection made with Bridgerton reveals our longing for depth. We miss true intimacy, and the exciting construction towards solid relationships. Instead of being content with immediate, but empty satisfaction, we’re starting to feel, finally, that we deserve more.
No wonder we are using our stamina to look for contents that help us grow, to become better people, more connected to what matters.
Bridgerton’s timing is perfect, for it opens a door leading to the search of meaningful relationships, self-love, empathy towards vulnerability … and if I may say it, the respect for the concept of marriage and family planning.
This author also dares to remark that binge-watching Brigerton is a remedy for the modern soul, and I’ll make you feel better than a boring quick-satisfactory one night stand.